Feb 20, 2018 | Updated: 09:54 AM EDT

Milky Way Future Revealed By ESA Gaia Mission Video: Travel Through 5 Million Years

May 03, 2017 02:10 AM EDT

A video has been released as a part European Space Agency's Gaia mission initial data release. The future of the Milky Way can be seen clearly in this video. The motion of approx. 2 million stars in the coming next 5 million years can be seen in the video from the Tycho-Gaia Astrometric Solution sample.

As Phys.org cited, Gaia is a space observatory stopped at the L2 Lagrange Point, a steady place in space a million miles behind Earth as seen from the sun. Its central goal is astrometry: measuring the exact positions, separations, and movement of 1 billion cosmic articles (basically stars) to make a three-dimensional guide of the Milky Way galaxy.

The radial velocity measurements from the Gaia mission will be very helpful for the astronomers for getting a stereoscopic picture of about 1 percent of the stars in the galaxy. It is well known that the stars are moving constantly around the Milky Way and the galactic center. The sun and stars in its region circle orbit the center at some half-million miles per hour, yet almost all are so far away that their clear movement has scarcely moved the needle over the time span of development.

European Space Agency reported that a total of 2,057,050 stars from the TGAS sample can be seen in the video, with 24,320 bright stars added from the Hipparcos Catalogue which was not a part of the first data release from Gaia in September 2016. The video begins from the positions of stars in the Milky Way as measured by Gaia in the vicinity of the year 2014 and 2015, and demonstrates how these positions are required to advance later on. The frames in the video are isolated by 750 years, and the general succession of the video covers 5 million years.

This video contains a preview of the motion of the stars that will be released officially in the future data releases of Gaia's mission. This will also help the researchers in finding more information regarding the Milky Way galaxy and know about the formation history of the galaxy.

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